Stuffed Peppers

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Stuffed Peppers are a fancy way to serve peppers! They are so easy, delicious and impressive enough to serve for special occasions or special guests! 

While I often serve peppers in a stir fry or in a fresh Greek salad, I do love using the pepper itself as a serving vessel!  We’ve filled these with a delicious beef, sausage and rice filling perfect for a quick and complete meal in one tidy package!

Baked Stuffed Peppers in a clear baking dish

Stuffed Bell Peppers are easy to make and everyone loves them!  We fill these with a mixture of beef and sausage but you can use one or the other (or even ground turkey if you prefer) and I sometimes replace the rice with Cauliflower Rice. While I used green peppers in this recipe, any color bell pepper (red/yellow/orange) will work just fine.

When choosing the color of pepper for your Stuffed Peppers recipe, it will depend on your personal taste preference. Green peppers are a bit more zesty and definitely less sweet than red, yellow or orange. Green peppers in this recipe really compliment the flavors in the beef, sausage, tomato-rice mixture.

Assembled ingredients for Stuffed Peppers in a skillet

How to make Stuffed Peppers

My friends often ask me how to make stuffed bell peppers and my response is always the same – it’s so easy! While these may look difficult, if you follow these easy steps, you will have perfect stuffed peppers every time!

  • Brown meat and aromatics. Add tomato sauce, rice and seasonings and cook until rice is tender.
  • While the filling is cooking, prepare your peppers by simmering 5 minutes to soften.
  • Fill peppers with pasta sauce, meat and rice mixture.
  • Top with cheese and bake until bubbly!

I usually cut my peppers across the top but you can also cut them top to bottom to make smaller portions (like in my Mexican Stuffed Peppers).

Do You Have to Pre-cook the Peppers Before Stuffing Them?  No you don’t have to precook the peppers, but they do stay quite crisp if you don’t pre-cook them. I personally prefer starting with cooked peppers for this Stuffed Peppers recipe.  

Stuffed Peppers prepped in a baking dish and ready to bake

How Long to Cook Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed peppers should be cooked at about 350°F for about 45 minutes. Be sure to cover with foil during the initial 30-35 minutes to ensure they do not dry out. Uncover and top with cheese and bake for the remaining 10 minutes or so until brown and bubbly.

What to serve with Stuffed Peppers?

One serving of Stuffed Peppers being served from a baking dish

Can you freeze Stuffed Peppers?

Yes, you definitely can freeze Stuffed Peppers and they are a great make-ahead meal! You will need to bake them first, then you can either freeze them individually or together in a baking dish. To re-heat, simply thaw in the fridge overnight and bake in a 350°F oven until heated through.

Keep this Stuffed Peppers recipe close at hand for a quick, easy and fun way to serve dinner! Prepped and ready in under 1 hour, this recipe is great for your busy schedule!

Print Recipe
4.91 from 10 votes
Servings: 6 servings
Stuffed Peppers
Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
1 hr 15 mins
Author: Holly
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: bell peppers, easy, stuffed peppers, with rice

Tender bell peppers stuffed with a zesty beef and rice filling and baked until bubbly.

  • 6 bell peppers
  • 1/2 lb lean ground beef
  • 1/2 lb Italian sausage
  • 1 small onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 can small diced tomatoes 14 1/2 oz
  • 1/2 cup white rice uncooked
  • 1 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 2 1/2 cups marinara sauce divided
  • 1/2 cup cheddar cheese shredded
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Cut the tops off the peppers (reserve the tops), remove seeds and membranes and discard. Chop tops of the peppers to add to the filling.

  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook peppers 5 minutes. Remove and drain well.

  4. In a large skillet, brown beef, sausage, onion & garlic over medium high heat until no pink remains. Drain any fat. 

  5. Stir in the diced tomatoes with juice, rice, 1 1/4 cup water, diced pepper tops, Worcestershire sauce and Italian seasoning.

  6. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat and cover. Cook 15-20 minutes or until rice is tender. You can add more water if needed.

  7. Place 1 1/2 cups of marinara sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 pan. Fill each pepper with the rice mixture. Spoon remaining 1 cup marinara sauce over peppers.

  8. Cover with foil and bake 35 minutes. Remove foil, baste peppers with any sauce in the bottom. Top with cheddar and bake an additional 10 minutes or until cheese is melted and peppers are tender.

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

If you firmer/tender-crisp peppers, skip the boiling step and bake as directed.

Nutrition Information
Calories: 385, Fat: 21g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 64mg, Sodium: 922mg, Potassium: 933mg, Carbohydrates: 29g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 11g, Protein: 18g, Vitamin A: 85.1%, Vitamin C: 202.2%, Calcium: 13.7%, Iron: 20.5%

(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)

REPIN this Delicious Recipe

Stuffed Peppers in a baking dish with melted cheese on top


If you are looking for a quick and complete meal in one tidy package, then Stuffed Peppers are it! Using the pepper itself as the serving vessel, Stuffed Peppers are a fun and unique way to serve dinner to your family! #spendwithpennies #easyrecipe #stuffedpeppers #withsausage #withbeef #simpledinner
If you are looking for a quick and complete meal in one tidy package, then Stuffed Peppers are it! Using the pepper itself as the serving vessel, Stuffed Peppers are a fun and unique way to serve dinner to your family! #spendwithpennies #easyrecipe #stuffedpeppers #withsausage #withbeef #simpledinner


Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

32 comments on “Stuffed Peppers”

  1. What is the purpose of putting the sauce in the pan before it’s being baked? Wouldn’t it burn to the pan, making it hard to scrub off?

  2. My husband loves them! It is a really good recipe. I added a TBS of Tomato paste to the mix because I like a deep rich tomato flavor but the recipe is outstanding as is. I missed/don’t see where it said to add the marina sauce into to the meat mixture prior to stuffing which i caught when I saw the video. My peppers were about to go into the oven so I just stirred in the amount I had poured on top and when mixed added more to the top. They are wonderful. The melted cheese on top…..yummmmmm.

    • Hi Kathy, so glad you loved them! Tomato paste would definitely be a delicious addition. Diced tomatoes are added to the meat mixture, marinara sauce is spooned overtop and in the bottom of the baking dish.

  3. This is the first time in 52 years of marriage that I made stuffed peppers. These were absolutely fantastic!! I will definitely be making them again in the near future!!

  4. Red or yellow peppers are much better since they are sweeter.

  5. I was just wondering if you can use wheat rice? I know I would have to cook the wheat rice first . They say wheat rice is a little chewy. So I well cook It longer than white rice.

  6. What is the name is the first kitchen gadget you used in the pan? I must have one!!

  7. This was sooo good. The filling it self could be a main dish. Next I’ll probably use less of the diced tomato cause i don’t really like tomatoes. This was PERFECT!!!!!!

  8. Made this last night. They were delicious! Added additional oregano and Italian spice. Topped with mozarella cheese. 

  9. If you cook these in a slow cooker there is no need to blanch the peppers, they come out nice and soft.  I would put some water in the bottom rather than the sauce.  6 hours on low.

  10. Can I use minute rice?


  12. My family loves these. We even like them for a Christmas Eve supper (red and green, lol) . Sometimes the peppers are just too big and overwhelming so we stsryedcmaking stuffed pepper “rings” making three or more rings from each and having lots of extra stuffing. Love your recipe.

  13. Oh my, yes to all of this. The end of the summer is the perfect time to have a huge grillout in the backyard.

  14. This recipe sounds amazing! Question though, if using cauliflower rice, do you need to pre-cook the cauliflower rice or simply follow the same directions? Thanks!

  15. I’m in the 35 minutes now.. The stuffing was great tasting.. Can’t wait for cheese topping and to be able to cut in that bell… Thank you , Very easy to follow!

  16. Hi! Just came across this recipe and can’t wait to try it (after heatwave is over)! Just one question, is rice a long grain rice or an instant rice?

  17. these were the best stuffwd peppers I’ve ever made over the last 40 years. My new go ro recipe

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